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2018

Request for Information on the Future Direction of the Rehabilitation Training Program

A Request for Information (RFI) on the Future Direction of the Rehabilitation Training Program was posted in the Federal Register on May 4, 2018. The U.S. Department of Education (Department) is requesting input on the portfolio of grants supported under the Rehabilitation Training Program, specifically those supported under the Rehabilitation Long-Term Training, Rehabilitation Short-Term Training, and Innovative Rehabilitation Training authorities to determine whether the activities funded under the Rehabilitation Training Program are aligned with the goals of the Department and the needs of State vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies. We will use the information gathered in response to this request for information (RFI) to determine whether any changes are needed in designing and implementing grant activities under this program, including the specific mix of activities supported each year.

Comments must be received on or before July 3, 2018. The RFI is located at https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2018-09429.

(May 4, 2018)



2017 News Items

Sample Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and Infrastructure Costs Toolkit

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) established new requirements for the development of MOUs in the one-stop service delivery system. The Innovation and Opportunity Network (ION) website has posted a Sample MOU and accompanying Cost Allocation Analyses that may be used as a reference guide or toolkit when developing an MOU. The sample MOU and toolkit includes the one-stop operating budget, Infrastructure Funding Agreement (IFA), and cost allocation methodologies pursuant to the requirements of section 121 of WIOA, its implementing regulations in the Joint WIOA Final Rule at 20 CFR part 678 and the corresponding Department of Education implementing regulations at 34 CFR parts 361 and 463 and the relevant guidance.

(March 24, 2017)


Frequently Asked Questions on Period of Performance for Formula Grant Awards

The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) in the U.S. Department of Education (Department) has received requests for clarification regarding the period of performance for the Rehabilitation Services Administration’s (RSA’s) formula grant awards. A Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page was developed which defines the period of performance and its impact on the obligation and carryover of Federal funds. The information in these FAQs provides guidance and technical assistance to RSA formula grantees that will enable them to maximize the drawdown of Federal award funds during the period of performance and assist individuals with disabilities to achieve high-quality employment.

(March 22, 2017)


Integrated Location Criteria of the Definition of “Competitive Integrated Employment” FAQ

The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) in the U.S. Department of Education (Department) has received requests for clarification of the definition of "competitive integrated employment," particularly with respect to the "integrated employment location" criteria of that definition for purposes of the Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) program. In response, a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page has been developed which addresses the criteria for an integrated employment location within the definition of "competitive integrated employment" in section 7(5)(B) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Rehabilitation Act), as amended by title IV of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), and its implementing VR program regulations in 34 CFR §361.5(c)(9)(ii) (see 81 FR 55629 (August 19, 2016)). The information in these FAQs provides guidance and technical assistance to VR agencies and community rehabilitation programs so that they may assist individuals with disabilities to achieve high-quality employment.

(January 18, 2017)


Technical Assistance Circulars related to the One-Stop Service Delivery System

The Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) announces the publication of two Technical Assistance Circulars (TAC):

This policy guidance is being issued jointly with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Career Technical and Adult Education and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment Training Administration.

TAC 17-02 provides general guidance for the implementation of operational requirements under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) pertaining to the one-stop delivery system, branded nationally as the American Job Center network. Due to the broad scope of the one-stop delivery system, encompassing multiple programs administered by different Federal agencies, this guidance provides the primary components for understanding and implementing an integrated American Job Center network.

TAC 17-03 provides guidance on the operating costs of the one-stop delivery system, which are comprised of infrastructure costs and additional costs (i.e., career services, shared operating costs, and shared services) in accordance with the requirements set forth in WIOA and its implementing regulations.

(January 18, 2017)


Transition Guide to Postsecondary Education and Employment for Students and Youth with Disabilities

The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) is pleased to publish A Transition Guide to Postsecondary Education and Employment for Students and Youth with Disabilities (PDF, 1.1MB). This guide is being issued by OSERS, the Rehabilitation Services Administration, and the Office of Special Education Programs to advance our efforts in ensuring that all students and youth with disabilities are equipped with the skills and knowledge to be engaged in the 21st century workforce. This transition guide addresses the following topics to facilitate a seamless transition from school to post-school activities:

  • Transition planning: opportunities and programs;
  • Transition services and requirements, as authorized by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the Rehabilitation Act as amended by title IV of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA);
  • Education and employment options for students and youth with disabilities after leaving secondary school; and
  • Supporting decisions made by students and youth with disabilities.

We recognize the significance of collaborative partnerships and hope that the information in this guide will assist students and youth with disabilities and their families in developing and pursuing their goals for adult life. Additionally, this transition guide will help students and youth with disabilities and their families to better understand how State educational agencies, local educational agencies, and State Vocational Rehabilitation agencies work together to facilitate improved outcomes for students and youth with disabilities.

(January 13, 2017)



2016 News Items

Performance Accountability Guidance for WIOA Core Programs

TAC-17-01 — "Performance Accountability Guidance for Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Title I, Title II, Title III and Title IV Core Programs" PDF (1.4MB)

(December 20, 2016)


WIOA State Plans

The Departments of Labor and Education are pleased to announce the availability of the approved Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Unified or Combined State Plans at WIOA State Plans. The public and workforce system stakeholders may view, download, or search the State Plans for information on how states are undertaking the implementation of WIOA. The search feature provides users a method for searching any or all State plans based on a topic, word or phrase within a section, multiple sections, or the entirety of a State plan, and to compare strategies and practices.

(December 15, 2016)


Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation (CSAVR) - November 2016

The Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA), together with its federal partners in the Departments of Education and Labor, provided technical assistance on the final regulations under titles I and IV of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) at the Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation (CSAVR) fall conference, November 7 through November 10, 2016. Under title I, the technical assistance addressed final regulations implementing the joint performance indicators and the one-stop infrastructure. Under title IV, the Rehabilitation Act, the technical assistance addressed final regulations implementing program-specific changes made to the State Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Services program and the State Supported Employment Services program, as well as final regulations implementing new section 511, Limitations on the Use of Subminimum Wage.

(November 23, 2016)


Webinars

RSA maintains a page listing upcoming and past webinars. You may find these webinars of particular interest.

(October 14, 2016)

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RSA-911

The Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) announces the posting of the first in a series of webinars related to the changes and the collection and reporting of data via the Case Service Report RSA-911. In this recorded webinar, RSA staff provide an overview of the performance measures, key terms in the joint guidance, information on how the terms apply to VR and the RSA-911. RSA also discusses the deliverable timelines for 2016 and 2017 and how to use the RSA-911 data to monitor the performance of the VR program within the state agency.

Download the webinar and transcript for “RSA-911 - Introduction to Data Collection and Reporting Requirements” from the National Clearinghouse of Rehabilitation Training Materials (NCRTM) website.

Also, you may be interested in the page Supporting Information for the RSA-911 Data.

(October 5, 2016)

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New Policy Directive Issued

PD-16-04—"Revision of Policy Directive (PD) 14-01 instructions for the completion of the Case Service Report Manual (RSA-911) for the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program and the State Supported Employment Services Program" (PDF, 929KB)

(September 27, 2016)


WIOA Joint Policy Guidance on Data Sharing and Confidentiality

The U.S. Departments of Labor and Education are committed to providing technical assistance as state workforce and education partner agencies begin preparation for reporting under WIOA. According, the Departments of Labor and Education are issuing this joint guidance on data matching to facilitate performance reporting and evaluation. This joint guidance is a resource to provide information to assist State agencies, educational agencies and institutions, and service providers in meeting WIOA requirements. The joint guidance and any related documents may be found at https://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/fpco/pdf/final-ferpa-tegl-report.pdf (PDF, 178KB).

(August 24, 2016)


Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Final Rules

The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services’ Rehabilitation Services Administration is proud to announce the publication in the Federal Register of the following final rules implementing the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).

  • WIOA: Joint Rule for Unified and Combined State Plans, Performance Accountability, and the One-Stop System Joint Provisions — Final Rule
    (Effective Date: October 18, 2016)
  • State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program; State Supported Employment Services Program; Limitations on Use of Subminimum Wage — Final Rule
    (Effective Date: September 19, 2016, with the exception of 34 CFR 361.10; 34 CFR 361.23; 34 CFR 361.40; and subparts D, E, and F of part 361, which become effective October 18, 2016)
  • WIOA: Miscellaneous Program Changes — Final Rule
    (Effective Date: September 19, 2016, with the exception that the removal of part 388 becomes effective October 1, 2016)
  • Programs and Activities Authorized by the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act (Title II of the WIOA) — Final Rule
    (Effective Date: September 19, 2016, with the exception of subparts H, I, and J of part 463, which become effective October 18, 2016)
  • WIOA: Department of Labor-Only — Final Rule
    (Effective Date: October 18, 2016)

(August 19, 2016)


Recently Posted on ED.GOV

The Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) will provide technical assistance on the regulations implementing program-specific changes made to the State Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Services program and the State Supported Employment Services program, as well as those implementing Limitations on the Use of Subminimum Wage in new section 511 of the Act at three regional meetings on August 9th, September 7th and September 27th. You can view the presentations from these regional meetings in PDF format by visiting the Supporting Material section of the RSA Regional Meetings on Program-Specific Requirements under the Rehabilitation Act page.

Also, the Frequently Asked Questions about WIOA pages has been updated.

(August 8, 2016)


Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards; Rehabilitation Services Administration-Disability Innovation Fund-Transition Work-Based Learning Model Demonstrations (CFDA Number 84.421B)

A notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2016 was published in the Federal Register on August 1, 2016.

  • Applications Available: August 1, 2016.
  • Date of Pre-Application Webinar: August 4, 2016.
  • Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: September 6, 2016.

(August 1, 2016)


Final Priorities, Requirements, and Definition-Disability Innovation Fund-Transition Work-Based Learning Model Demonstrations (CFDA Number 84.421B)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services announces priorities, requirements, and a definition under the Disability Innovation Fund (DIF) Program. The Assistant Secretary may use these priorities, requirements, and definition for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2016 and later years. The Assistant Secretary takes this action to identify, develop, implement, and evaluate work-based learning models that are supported by evidence and will help students with disabilities prepare for postsecondary education and competitive integrated employment. The models must be delivered through a coordinated system of transition services.

(August 1, 2016)


Notice Inviting Applications—Training of Interpreters for Individuals Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Individuals Who Are Deaf-Blind Program (CFDA Number 84.160)

A notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2016 was published in the Federal Register on July 25, 2016.

(July 27, 2016)


Notice of Final Priority—Training of Interpreters for Individuals Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Individuals Who Are Deaf-Blind Program (CFDA Number 84.160)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services announces a final priority under the Training of Interpreters for Individuals Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Individuals Who Are Deaf-Blind program. The Assistant Secretary may use this priority for competitions in fiscal year 2016 and later years. We take this action to provide training and technical assistance to better prepare novice interpreters to become highly qualified nationally certified sign language interpreters. This priority is effective August 24, 2016.

(July 27, 2016)


Commissioner's Quarterly Newsletter

The second edition of Commissioner's Corner is now on-line. We are excited to celebrate another significant milestone in the implementation of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), signed into law by President Obama on July 22, 2014. This landmark legislation and its implementing regulations are designed to strengthen and improve our nation’s public workforce system and help Americans with significant barriers to employment, including individuals with disabilities, into high quality jobs and careers and help employers hire and retain skilled workers. Read more at the Commissioner's Corner.

(July 26, 2016)


FY 2016 Technical Assistance Guide

The Rehabilitation Services Administration’s FY 2016 Technical Assistance Guide for the Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Program is intended to serve as a resource and planning guide for VR agencies and state teams to assist in the preparation for and conduct of technical assistance visits this fiscal year.

(July 25, 2016)


Proposed Priority —Training of Interpreters for Individuals Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Individuals Who are Deaf-Blind program (CFDA Number 84.160D)

On Friday, May 6, 2016 the Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services announced a priority under the Training of Interpreters for Individuals Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Individuals Who are Deaf-Blind program (CFDA 84.160D). The Assistant Secretary may use this priority for competitions in fiscal year 2016 and later years. We take this action to provide training to working interpreters in order to develop a new skill area or enhance an existing skill area. We must receive your comments on or before June 6, 2016.

(May 9, 2016)


Proposed Priority — Proposed Priorities, Requirements, and Definitions-Disability Innovation Fund-Transition Work-Based Learning Model Demonstrations (CFDA Number 84.421B)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services proposes priorities, requirements, and definitions under the Disability Innovation Fund (DIF) Program. The Assistant Secretary may use these priorities, requirements, and definitions for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2016 and later years. The Assistant Secretary takes this action to identify, develop, implement, and evaluate effective work-based learning models that will help students with disabilities prepare for postsecondary education and competitive integrated employment. The models must be delivered through a coordinated system of transition services. We invite you to submit comments regarding this notice. To ensure that your comments have maximum effect in developing the notice of final priorities, requirements, and definitions, we urge you to identify clearly the specific section of the proposed priority, requirement, or definition that each comment addresses. We must receive your comments on or before May 13, 2016.

(April 13, 2016)


Proposed Priority — Training of Interpreters for Individuals Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Individuals Who Are Deaf-Blind program (CFDA Number 84.160)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services announces a priority under the Training of Interpreters for Individuals Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Individuals Who Are Deaf-Blind program. The Assistant Secretary may use this priority for competitions in fiscal year 2016 and later years. We take this action to provide training and technical assistance to better prepare novice interpreters to become highly qualified nationally certified sign language interpreters. In addition to your general comments and recommended clarifications, we seek input on the proposed design of the Experiential Learning Model Demonstration Center for Novice Interpreters and Baccalaureate Degree ASL-English Interpretation Programs (Center) and expectations for implementation. We must receive your comments on or before May 9, 2016.

(April 7, 2016)


Frequently Asked Fiscal Questions – Pre–Employment Transition Services - Requirements under the Vocational Rehabilitation Program
As Imposed by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA)

RSA has posted a list of Frequently Asked Questions about Pre–Employment Transition Services which can be found at http://www2.ed.gov/programs/rsabvrs/fiscal-resources/index.html#faq

(April 7, 2016)


PD-16-03: Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Requirements for Unified and Combined State Plans

You can obtain a copy of PD-16-03 at /policy/speced/guid/rsa/policy-directives.html.

If you have any questions regarding PD-16-03, please contact your RSA state liaison. You can access the list of state liaisons at https://rsa.ed.gov/people.cfm.

(March 9, 2016)


WIOA State Plan Submission Portal

The Departments of Labor and Education are pleased to announce that the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) State Plan submission portal is now live. The portal is part of the State Plan Requirements Information Collection Request (ICR) (OMB No. 1205-0522) and has been approved as the method by which states should submit their Unified or Combined State Plan. A text version of the ICR, a link to the portal, and a training for state portal users may be found at https://www.doleta.gov/wioa/State_Plan_Resources.cfm.

As a reminder, State Plans are due to the departments no later than April 1, 2016.

We encourage you to go to https://rsa.ed.gov/request-access.cfm?usp=Y and request a user account, if you have not already done so. We look forward to receiving your state plan. The Employment and Training Administration, Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education, and the Rehabilitation Services Administration will each issue State Plan guidance to provide states with additional information and resources.

(March 4, 2016)


Wall Chart of State Vocational Rehabilitation Performance

A wall chart of FY 2014 state VR performance measures has been posted in PDF format. An Excel spreadsheet showing the data used by the c hart has also been posted.

(February 19, 2016)


Applications for New Awards; American Indian Vocational Rehabilitation Services (CFDA Number 84.250L)

A notice was published in the Federal Register on February 11, 2016 inviting applications for new awards for the American Indian Vocational Rehabilitation Services program.

(February 17, 2016)


Commissioner's Corner

The first edition of Commissioner's Corner is now on-line. It is a quarterly communication designed to provide information and resources that are important for maximizing the opportunity for competitive integrated employment and independence for individuals with disabilities leading to full community inclusion and economic self-sufficiency in the 21st Century labor market.

(February 10, 2016)


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2015 News Items

Comments being accepted on the Unified State Plan

The Department of Labor, in coordination with the Departments of Education, Health and Human Services, Agriculture, and Housing and Urban Development, is soliciting comments concerning a collection of data that will be used for Unified and Combined State Plans under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). The WIOA Unified and Combined State Plan Requirements is a consolidated information collection that would implement sections 102 and 103 of WIOA (P.L. 113-128). WIOA requires that, no later than March 3, 2016, each State, at a minimum, submit a Unified State Plan as a condition of receiving funds for core programs subject to the Unified State Plan requirements. In the alternative, States may submit a Combined State Plan as a condition of receiving funds under certain named programs subject to the Combined State Plan provisions. See 29 U.S.C. §§ 3112 and 3113. The Unified or Combined State Plan requirements are designed to improve service integration and ensure that the publicly-funded workforce system provides a range of employment, education, training, and related services and supports to help all jobseekers secure good jobs while providing businesses with the skilled workers they need to compete in the global economy. To that end, the Unified or Combined State Plan would describe how the State will develop and implement a unified, integrated service delivery system rather than discuss the State's approach to operating each program individually.

As required by the Paperwork Reduction Act, we are seeking comment through January 22, 2016 on the proposed WIOA State Plan information collection request (ICR). A copy of the Federal Register Notice for this collection, proposed ICR and supplement, and supporting statement may be accessed at: http://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=201503-1205-020.

The Departments published an earlier version of this ICR for a 60-day comment period that closed on October 5, 2015. The Departments responded to comments received during the 60-day comment period and are re-publishing the ICR for a final 30-day comment period as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act. This comment period is open for 30 days and closes on January 22, 2016. Any comments not received through the process outlined in the Federal Register (https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2015-12-23/pdf/2015-32278.pdf) will not be considered.

(12/31/2015)


PD-16-02—OMB Approval for RSA-722

PD-16-02—"Announcement of OMB Approval for Annual Report on Appeals Process (RSA-722)"
Dec 14, 2015 — PDF (119KB)

(12/14/2015)


PD-16-01—OMB Approval for RSA-7-OB Annual Report

PD-16-01—"Announcement of OMB Approval for Form RSA-7-OB, Independent Living Services for Older Individuals who are Blind Program (ILOIB) Annual Report"
Nov 30, 2015 — PDF (320KB)

(12/02/2015)


Vision. Policy. Strategy. January 26-28, 2016

Mark Your Calendars for the National Convening of Workforce Leadership: A conference on Innovation and Opportunity, to be held January 26-28, 2016 in Washington, D.C. Download the flyer [ PDF | 502KB ].

(11/10/2015)


Award made for OIB Training and Technical Assistance Program

The Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) is pleased to announce the awarding of the Independent Living Services for Older Individuals Who Are Blind (OIB) Training and Technical Assistance Program grant (84.177Z) to Mississippi State University (MSU), effective October 1, 2015.

Through this grant, RSA established a Cooperative Agreement with MSU for an OIB Training and Technical Assistance Center (Center) to provide sustained training and technical assistance (TA) — generalized, targeted, and intensive — to designated state agencies (DSAs) funded under the OIB program and to any service providers the DSAs fund to provide services directly to consumers. The Center will develop and provide training and TA to DSAs and other service providers funded under the OIB program in the following general topic areas:

  1. Community outreach;
  2. Best practices in the provision and delivery of services;
  3. Program performance, including data reporting and analysis; and
  4. Financial and management practices, including practices to ensure compliance with grant administration requirements.

(October 9, 2015)


Vision for the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program as a Partner in the Workforce Development System under WIOA

TAC-15-02—"Vision for the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program as a Partner in the Workforce Development System under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act"
Aug 17, 2015 — PDF (69KB)

(August 18, 2015)


Notices published in the Federal Register

Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards — Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center-Targeted Communities (CFDA Number 84.264F)

A notice was published in the Federal Register on August 14, 2015 inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015 Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center-Targeted Communities program (CFDA Number 84.264F).

(August 14, 2015)


New TAC: Vision for the One-Stop Delivery System under WIOA

TAC-15-01—"Vision for the One-Stop Delivery System under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA)"
Aug 13, 2015 — PDF (99KB)

(August 13, 2015)


Notices published in the Federal Register

Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards — Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Workforce Innovation Technical Assistance Center (CFDA Number 84.264G)

A notice was published in the Federal Register on August 13, 2015 inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015 for the Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Workforce Innovation Technical Assistance Center program (CFDA Number 84.264G).

Final Priority; Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Workforce Innovation Technical Assistance Center (CFDA Number 84.264G)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services announces a priority under the Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Workforce Innovation Technical Assistance Center program.

(August 13, 2015)

Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards — Rehabilitation Training-Technical Assistance Center for Vocational Rehabilitation Agency Program Evaluation and Quality Assurance (CFDA Number 84.263B)

A notice was published in the Federal Register on August 11, 2015 inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015 Rehabilitation Training-Technical Assistance Center for Vocational Rehabilitation Agency Program Evaluation and Quality Assurance program (CFDA Number 84.263B).

(August 11, 2015)


Notices published in the Federal Register

Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards — Demonstration and Training: Career Pathways for Individuals With Disabilities (CFDA Number 84.235N)

A notice was published in the Federal Register on August 6, 2015 inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015 for the Demonstration and Training: Career Pathways for Individuals with Disabilities program (CFDA Number: 84.235N).

Final Priority and Definitions; Demonstration and Training Program: Career Pathways for Individuals With Disabilities (CFDA Number 84.235N)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services announces a priority designed to demonstrate promising practices in the use of career pathways to improve employment outcomes for individuals with disabilities.

Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards — Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center - Youth With Disabilities (CFDA Number 84.264H)

A notice was published in the Federal Register on July 30, 2015 inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015 for the Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center - Youth With Disabilities program (CFDA Number 84.264H).

Final Priority; Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center-Youth With Disabilities (CFDA Number 84.264H)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services announces a priority under the Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center-Youth With Disabilities program.

Final Waiver and Extension of the Project Period; Regional Interpreter Education Centers for the Training of Interpreters for Individuals Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Individuals Who Are Deaf-Blind (CFDA Number 84.160A)

The Secretary waives the requirements that generally prohibit project periods exceeding five years and extensions of project periods involving the obligation of additional Federal funds for five 60-month projects initially funded in fiscal year (FY) 2010. The Secretary also extends the project period for these projects for one year. This waiver and extension enables the currently funded Regional Interpreter Education Centers for the training of interpreters for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing and individuals who are deaf-blind (Regional Centers) to receive funding through September 30, 2016.

Final Waiver and Extension of the Project Period; National Interpreter Education Center for the Training of Interpreters for Individuals Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing and Individuals Who Are Deaf-Blind (CFDA Number 84.160B)

The Secretary waives the requirements that generally prohibit project periods exceeding five years and extensions of project periods involving the obligation of additional Federal funds for a 60-month project initially funded in fiscal year (FY) 2010. The Secretary also extends the project period for this project for one year. This waiver and extension enables the currently funded National Interpreter Education Center for the training of interpreters for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing and individuals who are deaf-blind (National Center) to receive funding through September 30, 2016.

(July 30 - August 6, 2015)


Notices Inviting Applications for RSA Programs

Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards — Disability Innovation Fund — Automated Personalization Computing Project (CFDA Number 84.421A)

A notice was published in the Federal Register on July 23, 2015 for Disability Innovation Fund-Automated Personalization Computing Project inviting applications for new awards.

Notice Inviting Applications for the OSERS/RSA Independent Living Services for Older Individuals Who Are Blind — Independent Living Services for Older Individuals Who Are Blind Training and Technical Assistance Program (CFDA Number 84.177Z)

A notice was published in the Federal Register on July 22, 2015 for the Independent Living Services for Older Individuals Who Are Blind Training and Technical Assistance Program inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015.

Notice Inviting Applications for the OSERS/RSA American Indian Vocational Rehabilitation Services — Training and Technical Assistance program (CFDA Number 84.250Z)

A notice was published in the Federal Register on July 22, 2015 for the American Indian Vocational Rehabilitation Services—Training and Technical Assistance program inviting applications for a new award for Training and Technical Assistance.

(July 22-23, 2015)


WIOA

Read the “July 1, 2015 — Making a Shift in the Public Workforce System” blog post

(July 1, 2015)


Notices of Proposed Priority

Proposed Priority and Definitions—Rehabilitation Training: Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center-Targeted Communities (CFDA Number 84.264F)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) proposes a priority and definitions to fund a cooperative agreement to develop and support a Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center for Targeted Communities (VRTAC-TC). We take this action to focus Federal financial assistance on an identified national need. We intend the VRTAC-TC to improve the capacity of State vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies and their partners to increase participation levels for individuals with disabilities from low-income communities and to equip these individuals with the skills and competencies needed to obtain high-quality competitive integrated employment.

Proposed Priority—Vocational Rehabilitation Workforce Innovation Technical Assistance Center (CFDA Number 84.264G)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services proposes a priority to establish the Workforce Innovation Technical Assistance Center. The Assistant Secretary may use this priority for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2015 and later years. We take this action to provide training and technical assistance (TA) to state vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies to improve services under the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services program (VR program) and State Supported Employment Services program for individuals with disabilities, including those with the most significant disabilities, and to implement changes to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), signed into law on July 22, 2014.

Proposed Priority—Technical Assistance Center for Vocational Rehabilitation Agency Program Evaluation and Quality Assurance (CFDA Number 84.263B)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services proposes a priority under the Experimental and Innovative Training program. The Assistant Secretary may use this priority for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2015 and later years. We take this action to focus federal financial assistance on an identified national need. We intend the priority to support a Training and Technical Assistance Center for Vocational Rehabilitation Agency Program Evaluation and Quality Assurance (PEQA)

Proposed Priority—Institute on Rehabilitation Issues (CFDA Number 84.264C)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services proposes a priority to establish a topical Institute on Rehabilitation Issues (IRI). The Assistant Secretary may use this priority for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2015 and later years. We take this action to provide training and technical assistance (TA) to improve the capacity of state vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies and their partners to equip individuals with disabilities with the skills and competencies necessary to help them obtain competitive integrated employment.

Proposed Priority and Definitions—Career Pathways for Individuals With Disabilities (CFDA Number 84.235N)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services proposes a priority and definitions under the Demonstration and Training program. The Assistant Secretary may use this priority and one or more of these definitions for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2015 and later years. This priority and these definitions are designed to support projects that develop and implement career pathways for individuals with disabilities.

Proposed Priority-Rehabilitation Training—Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center-Youth With Disabilities (CFDA Number 84.264H)

The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services proposes a priority under the Rehabilitation Training program. The Assistant Secretary may use this priority for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2015 and later years. This priority is designed to ensure that professionals working in State vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies receive the technical assistance they need to provide youth with disabilities with services and supports that lead to postsecondary education and competitive integrated employment.

(May 15 - June 26, 2015)


New Policy Directives Issued

PD-15-06—"Instructions for completing the Federal Financial Report (SF-425) for the State Supported Employment Services program"
Mar 12, 2015 — PDF (129KB)

PD-15-05—"Revisions to PD-12-06, instructions for completing the Federal Financial Report (SF-425) for the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services program"
Feb 5, 2015 — PDF (131KB)

PD-15-04—"OMB Approval of the Assurances for the Protection and Advocacy of Individual Rights (PAIR) Program, OMB 1820-0625"
Jan 28, 2015 — PDF (26KB)

(March 17, 2015)

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2014 News Items

Capacity Building for Traditionally Underserved Populations

The Notice of Final Priorities and the Notice Inviting Applications for Capacity Building for Traditionally Underserved Populations (CFDA 84.315C) were published on Thursday, August 14, 2014, and applications will be received until Monday, September 15, 2014, at 4:30 p.m. Washington, DC time. More information is available at https://rsa.ed.gov/choose.cfm?menu=nfp315c

(August 25, 2014)


Job-Driven Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center

The Notice of Final Priority and the Notice Inviting Applications for the Job-Driven Vocational Rehabilitation Technical Assistance Center (CFDA 84.264A) were published on Tuesday, August 19, 2014, and applications will be received until Thursday, September 18, 2014, at 4:30 p.m. Washington, DC time. More information is available at https://rsa.ed.gov/choose.cfm?menu=nfp264a

(August 25, 2014)


Invitation to Comment on Implementation of Title II and Title IV of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

In a joint blog post, OSERS and the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education (OCTAE) invite you to submit comments and recommendations to help us implement the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), signed by President Obama on July 22.

Please submit comments by Friday, Aug. 29, 2014. Submitting comments is voluntary and subject to ED blog comment policies.

(August 13, 2014)


Send RSA email about WIOA

Email RSA with your questions and ideas on WIOA implementation. Send your emails to RSA.WIOA@ed.gov

(August 8, 2014)


Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

A page has been posted with information about the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.

(July 22, 2014)


Job-Driven Training for Workers

In his January 28, 2014 State of the Union address, President Obama “asked Vice President Biden to lead an across-the-board reform of America’s training programs to make sure they have one mission: train Americans with the skills employers need, and match them to good jobs that need to be filled right now. That means more on-the-job training, and more apprenticeships that set a young worker on an upward trajectory for life. It means connecting companies to community colleges that can help design training to fill their specific needs.” Two days later, in Waukesha, Wisconsin, he signed a Presidential Memorandum on Job-Driven Training for Workers to develop within 180 days an action plan to make America’s workforce and training system “more job-driven, integrated and effective.” The Presidential Memorandum called for this action plan to include “concrete steps to make federal workforce and training programs and policies more focused on imparting relevant skills with job-market value, more easily accessed by employers and job seekers, and more accountable for producing positive employment and earning outcomes for the people they serve.” For more, read the Ready to Work: Job-Driven Training and American Opportunity (1.54 M) report, which was released on July 22, 2014.

(July 22, 2014)


Announcements in the Federal Register July 14-31, 2014

  • On July 31, 2014, the U.S Department of Education published a Notice in the Federal register that the Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services proposes a priority under the Rehabilitation Training: Rehabilitation Long-Term Training program for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2014 and later years in order to fund any of the rehabilitation specialty areas listed in the notice.This priority is effective August 22, 2014.
  • Notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2014. Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Numbers: 84.129F, H, P, and Q.
  • A notice of applications for new awards for the Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians With Disabilities program was posted in the Federal Register on Thursday, July 17, 2014. The deadline for transmittal of applications is September 2, 2014.
  • In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 3501 et seq.), a notice that ED is proposing an extension of an existing information collection (the RSA-7OB for the Independent Living Services for Older Individuals Who Are Blind program) was published in the Federal Register on Friday, July 18, 2014. Comments due on or before August 18, 2014.
  • In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 3501 et seq.), a notice that ED is proposing a revision of an existing information collection (the RSA-15 for Randolph-Sheppard) was published in the Federal Register on Friday, July 18, 2014. Comments due on or before August 18, 2014.

(July 31, 2014)


The National Technical Assistance Center on Improving Transition to Postsecondary Education and Employment for Students with Disabilities

On Wednesday, July 2, 2014, the U.S Department of Education published a Notice in the Federal register inviting applications for a new award to establish and operate a National Technical Assistance Center on Improving Transition to Postsecondary Education and Employment for Students with Disabilities (Center). The Center will assist State educational agencies (SEAs), local educational agencies (LEAs), State vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies and other VR service providers to implement evidence-based and promising practices and strategies to ensure that students with disabilities, including those with significant disabilities, graduate from high school with the knowledge, skills, and supports needed for success in postsecondary education and employment.

Too many students with disabilities continue to experience difficulty in completing high school programs and gaining the content knowledge, work experiences, and other career-readiness skills and preparation needed to succeed as they transition from secondary education to postsecondary education and employment. According to the National Center for Education Statistics (2014) in 2012, 80 percent of students graduated high school with a regular diploma in four years, whereas, for students with disabilities, the four-year cohort graduation rate was 61 percent. Furthermore, data from the National Longitudinal Transition Study ( NLTS-2), in the 2009-2010 school year, indicated that 21 percent of students with disabilities dropped out of high school and only 45.6 percent of students with disabilities enrolled in some form of postsecondary education within four years of leaving school (Newman et. al., 2010). In order to improve post-school outcomes for students with disabilities, SEAs, LEAs, State VR agencies, and other VR service providers need to implement evidence-based and promising practices and strategies designed to prepare students with disabilities for postsecondary education and employment.

The Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services is committed to the goal of ensuring that every student, including every student with a disability, graduates from high school with the essential knowledge and skills for success in postsecondary education and employment. In order to improve outcomes for students with disabilities, the Department is working to better coordinate its expertise and resources. To further this, the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) and the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) are collaborating to support a technical assistance center that will help build the capacity of SEAs, LEAs, State VR agencies, and other VR service providers to implement evidence-based and promising practices and strategies to ensure that students with disabilities graduate from high school and are prepared for success in postsecondary education and employment.

This competition is open to SEAs; LEAs, including public charter schools that are considered LEAs under State law; State VR agencies; IHEs; other public agencies; private nonprofit organizations; outlying areas; freely associated States; Indian tribes or tribal organizations; and for-profit organizations. The Department intends to fund one project for $2.5 million a year for 5 years.

For further information about the proposed center, please contact: Selete Avoke (OSEP) (selete.avoke@ed.gov; 202-245-7260) or Kristen Rhinehart (RSA) (kristen.rhinehart@ed.gov; 202-245-6103).

(July 10, 2014)


Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on the definition of “reservation.”

The U.S. Department of Education (Department) published an NPRM in the June 23, 2014 Federal Register requesting public comment on the actions that the Department should take to amend the definition of “reservation” under the regulations governing the American Indian Vocational Rehabilitation Services (AIVRS) program in one of two ways. The Department is requesting comment from the public on two proposed amendments:

  1. Alternative A: would conform the definition to the Department’s current interpretation and practices.
  2. Alternative B: would limit the areas of land the Department considers to be reservations to those that are listed in the statutory definition of “reservation.”

The NPRM includes information about how to submit public comments. Responses must be received on or before August 22, 2014.

(June 23, 2014)


Updated Monitoring Tables

The FY 2014 Monitoring and Technical Assistance Guide (MTAG) includes a new focus area through which it will assess the use of VR program resources to achieve quality employment outcomes by conducting an in-depth and integrated analysis of core VR program and fiscal data. Links to the data tables to be used in this area of monitoring are available below.

FY 2014 Vocational Rehabilitation Fiscal Monitoring Tables (3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4) (1MB)

FY 2014 Vocational Rehabilitation Data Monitoring Tables (3.5 and above) (5.35 MB )

(June 9, 2014)


Wall Chart for FY 2013 State Vocational Rehabilitation Performance

The Wall Chart for FY 2013 State Vocational Rehabilitation Performance has been posted. The Wall Chart contains the results of various performance measures of the 80 VR and agency grantees grouped by agencies who serve blind and visually impaired individuals, the general disabled population of those states with two agencies, as well as those agencies with one VR agency serving all disabilities. Charts for prior years are also available.

(April 23, 2014)


New Technical Assistance Circulars

TAC-14-02
Mar 28, 2014
"Submission of the FY 2015 State Plan for the Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program and Supplement for the Supported Employment Services Program"
PDF (2.18MB)

TAC-14-01
Mar 18, 2014
"Federal Requirements Governing the Statewide Independent Living Councils -- Composition, Membership, Appointments, Term Limits, Duties, and Resource Plan"
PDF (338KB)

(March 28,2014)


Accessing and Initiating Changes to Formula Grant Award Notifications

This document describes the process to be used to request changes to the GAN (Grant Award Notification) such as address; however this process may be used only when the rights and obligations of the grantee are not affected. Also, please note that this process does not apply to the State Grant for Assistive Technology program.
MS Word (48KB) | PDF (232KB)

(February 19, 2014)


Monitoring and Technical Assistance Guide

Section 107 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, requires the Commissioner of the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) to conduct annual reviews and periodic on-site monitoring of programs authorized under Title I of the Rehabilitation Act to determine whether a vocational rehabilitation (VR) agency is complying substantially with the provisions of its State Plan under Section 101 of the Rehabilitation Act and with the Evaluation Standards and Performance Indicators established under Section 106. To fulfill this requirement, RSA has developed a Monitoring and Technical Assistance Guide (MTAG), through which it will assess improvements in the performance of the VR program, including those resulting from innovative practices, as well as compliance with pertinent federal programmatic and fiscal requirements.

(February 3, 2014)



2013 News Items

New Policy Directives Issued

PD-14-04
Dec 17, 2013
"RSA-15 - Report of Vending Facility Program"
PDF (976KB)

PD-14-03
Dec 16, 2013
"OMB Approval of the Assurances for the Protection and Advocacy for Assistive Technology Program, OMB 1820-0658"
PDF (104KB)

(December 18, 2013)


New Policy Directives Issued

PD-14-02
Oct 25, 2013
"Revision of PD-13-04 instructions for the completion of the Annual Vocational Rehabilitation Program/Cost Report (RSA-2) for the State Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program and the State Supported Employment Services Program"
PDF (253KB)

PD-14-01
Oct 25, 2013
"Revision of PD-13-05 Vocational Rehabilitation Program Case Service Report (RSA-911) data elements"
PDF (520KB)

(November 4, 2013)


2013 National State Rehabilitation Council Forum

The RSA National State Rehabilitation Council (SRC) Forum was held from June 24-25, 2013 in Arlington, Virginia. The objective of the Forum was to empower Councils, encourage partnerships with State Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies (VR) and foster advocacy for improvements in the public VR program in order to enhance opportunities for high quality employment for individuals with disabilities.

(September 10, 2013)


Fiscal Resources (for Basic VR)

The Basic VR Fiscal Resources page has been updated to show 2013 MOE Penalties and links to the materials from the FY 2013 National Financial Management Training Conference.

(September 10, 2013)


Fiscal Resources (for Basic VR)

The Basic VR Fiscal Resources page has been updated to show 2013 MOE Penalties and links to the materials from the FY 2013 National Financial Management Training Conference.

(September 10, 2013)


A Better Bottom Line: Employing People with Disabilities

"A Better Bottom Line: Employing People with Disabilities"
A blueprint for Governors has been issued by the National Governors Association (NGA).

(August 9, 2013)


New Policy Directives Issued

PD-13-03
Apr 30, 2013
"OMB Approval for Application for Client Assistance Program, OMB 1820-0520"
PDF (116KB)

PD-13-02
Apr 30, 2013
"Extension of the State Plan for the Vocational Rehabilitation Services Program and the Supplement for the Supported Employment Services Program"
PDF (1.6 M)

(April 30, 2013)


VR State Plans

An index page has posted to provide links to all Voc Rehab State Plans and Approval Letters for FY 2013

(February 6, 2013)


E-Mail Updates

There are two new email updates available from RSA: "Data Collection and Analysis" and "Research in Disability and Rehabilitation."

Sign up for e-mail updates from RSA.

(January 15, 2013)


 

To learn more about RSA—or use tools and download data—visit our Web portal at https://rsa.ed.gov or click on one of the links below.



   
Last Modified: 07/30/2018